Rotating weekly shifts would no longer be a practice at Chrysler Group's Trenton South Engine Plant after the members of UAW Local 372 last Sunday voted 365 to 93 to approve the change in its schedule. It’s clear that workers rejoiced upon knowing that this practice known as 3/2/120 has been thrown out. This meant that they no longer have to work days in one week, evenings the following week, and nights for the third week.
With this, Chrysler got an extra 49 days of production each year at straight time for its very popular 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine from using three groups of workers a day.
Workers asserted that quality was affected as the rotating schedules interfered with their ability to rest between shifts. Under the new plan, workers are split into six crews of workers. However, those crews will stay on the same shift -- days, evenings, or nights -- each week.
A Chrysler spokesman said that this change won’t incur added costs for the company. In Chrysler’s statement, it said that it was “pleased” about the approval of a work pattern that meets the workers’ needs.
On the union's Web site, it was announced that the changed scheduling will be implemented as quickly as possible. Trenton South is one of Chrysler's busiest plants. The 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine is produced only at two sites: at Trenton South and at a twin plant in Saltillo, Mexico.
This engine is used on many of Chrysler's best-sellers such as its minivans, the Jeep Wrangler, the Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 sedans. Last week, Chrysler said that the 3.6-liter Pentastar would be offered as the standard V-6 engine in its Ram 1500 pickup this year.